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ESSU Fall Meeting - A CDE Update

Event Date and Time

Thursday, September 15, 2022 (All day) to Friday, September 16, 2022 (All day)



Joint Meeting

For the first time this fall, ESSU will host a joint meeting focused on providing special education and gifted education leads with CDE updates essential to their roles.  

The 2022 Fall meeting will be presented virtually on September 15 & 16, 2022. 




This meeting is scheduled for 8:30 AM - 3:30 PM on Thursday, September 15, 2022. On Friday, September 16, 2022 the meeting is scheduled from 8:30 AM - 12:00 PM.

Thursday, September 15, 2022
8:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Plenary Session


101: CDE Update
Presented by: Dr. Paul Foster & Dr. Rebecca McKinney

Join representatives from the Colorado Department of Education for important updates.

Thursday, September 15, 2022
9:45 AM - 10:45 AM


Due to unforeseen circumstances the Legislative Update has been moved to 3:30 PM - 4:00 PM  and is the only session to be recorded.


102: Legislative Update 
Presented by Jennifer Mello

The Seventy-third General Assembly for the state of Colorado was a busy session for educators.  Please join Jennifer Mello for a recap for legislation impacting Colorado Public School and a preview of issues that may arise in the Seventy-fourth General Assembly in January 2023. 


Thursday, September 15, 2022
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM


103-S: Graduation Update
Presented by: Robin Russel, Gina Herrera & Dr. Gail Lott

Full implementation of the Graduation Guidelines Menu of Options went into effect for students graduating in the 21-22 school year. Please join Robin Russel(Office of Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness) and Gina Herrera and Dr. Gail Lott (Office of Special Education) as they provide updates regarding graduation requirements for special education students.  


103-G: Allowable Use and Budget Submissions for Gifted 3150 and 3228 Funds
Presented by: Dr. Rebecca McKinney

This session will explore the requirements set forth in statute and rule related to gifted education funding and submissions.  AU leads will be provided with information on the new submission process for expended budgets as well as ensure understanding of the elements necessary to meet conditions of rule with budget submissions.

Session 103-G handout (PDF)

Thursday, September 15, 2022
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM


104-S Ascend DMS
Presented by: Anlar 

On July 1, 2022, AnLar launched the new Ascend Data Management System (DMS).  AnLar will provide training on system functions and features.  


104-G: Gifted Programming Guidance Understanding Options for Supporting Diverse Gifted Learners
Presented by Michael Scott & Dr. Robin Green

Programming as defined in  ECEA 12.02(2)(h) for gifted learners is multifaceted and complex. Additionally, it must continue to evolve to meet the changing needs of the students being served in rural, urban, and suburban AUs.  This session will share information specific to the progress of updated programming guidance that has been developed from voices across the state.  The guidance will provide avenues for meeting the needs of diverse gifted learners that AU leaders can use to determine programming options at the local level.

Thursday, September 15, 2022
2:15 PM - 3:15 PM


105-S: Facility Schools Update
Presented by: Judy Stirman

Approved Facility Schools have been rapidly declining in Colorado in recent years causing a significant strain on the state’s ability to provide a full continuum of services.  In response, the Colorado General Assembly passed SB 21-274 and HB 22-1331 to address this issue.  Please join Judy Stirman and others from the Office of Facility Schools for an important update on the work being done to support facility schools in Colorado.


105-G: Exploring Advanced Learning Plan Guidance- From Compliance to Commitment
Presented by Terri Loiselle

The ALP is a legal document [22-20-R-12.00, C.R.S.] outlining programming for identified gifted students and is used as a guide for educational planning and decision-making. There are two components to ECEA Rules for Advanced Learning Plans: Content and Procedures/Responsibilities. A complete ALP addresses key requirements of both content and procedures/responsibilities for developing ALPs.  This session will explore the new guidance document on Advanced Learning Plans which is designed to support local AUs in meeting all of the requirements set forth in ECEA. 

Session 105-G handout (PDF)

Thursday, September 15, 2022
3:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Due to unforeseen circumstances the Legislative Update has been rescheduled from 9:45 AM - 10:45 AM and is the only session to be recorded.


102: Legislative Update 
Presented by Jennifer Mello

The Seventy-third General Assembly for the state of Colorado was a busy session for educators.  Please join Jennifer Mello for a recap for legislation impacting Colorado Public School and a preview of issues that may arise in the Seventy-fourth General Assembly in January 2023. 

Friday, September 16, 2022
8:30 AM - 9:30 AM


201-S: Update on New Federal Guidance on Discipline
Presented by: Jason Langberg

New guidance released in July 2022 from the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) helps public elementary and secondary schools fulfill their responsibilities to meet the needs of students with disabilities and avoid the discriminatory use of student discipline.  Please join Jason Langberg, from OCR’s Denver Office, for a review of this important new guidance. 

Handout: Section 504
Resources (Aug 2022) PDF


201-G: Nuts and Bolts of Gifted Annual Plan Development (UIP)
Presented by Terri Loiselle & Dr. Rebecca McKinney

The purpose of the Unified Improvement Plan (UIP) is to align efforts and targets to improve gifted student achievement and growth. It fulfills the obligations for accountability as defined within the Exceptional Children Education Act (ECEA) for the Gifted Education Annual Plan. To fulfill gifted education accountability requirements, a district addresses gifted students in four (4) areas of the UIP*.  This session will provide leaders with specific guidance to help make the UIP process run smoothly and efficiently.  This session will also provide AU leaders with information to successfully complete and submit the gifted portion of the UIP.  *AUs who participate in other forms meeting UIP requirements such as SCAP, this session will be focused on UIP but will have a breakout for SCAP districts.


Friday, September 16, 2022
9:45 AM -10:45 AM


202-S: Overview of HB22-1260 -  Access To Medically Necessary Services For Students 
Presented by: Melissa L. Barber, Caplan & Earnest LLC

During the Seventy-third General Assembly legislators passed HB22-1260 -  Access To Medically Necessary Services For Students.  No later than July 1, 2023, the bill requires each administrative unit (AU) to adopt a policy that addresses how a student who has a prescription from a qualified health-care provider for medically necessary treatment receives such treatment in the school setting as required by applicable federal and state laws. The bill requires the AU to make the policy publicly available on the administrative unit's website and available to the student's parent or legal guardian upon request.  Please join Melissa Barber from Caplan & Earnest as she helps special education administrators unpack this legislation.


202-G: Gifted Identification Guidance Recap and Review
Presented by Dr. Robin Green

Colorado State Statute states, “Each administrative unit… shall use a body of evidence upon which to base the determination of giftedness, which evidence must include, at a minimum, the identification assessment results, parental input, and multiple types of measures and data sources to adequately identify gifted children, including children from all socioeconomic, ethnic, and cultural populations and gifted children who also have disabilities.” (C.R.S. 22-20-201) Gifted Identification Guidance has been updated to support AUs in developing or refining local plans to meet the requirements set forth in statute and rule to create equitable identification processes.  This session will provide information about the updated guidance, supporting materials AU leaders can use and ongoing training opportunities.

Friday, September 16, 2022
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM


203-S: Are We There Yet? Integrating Response to Intervention within the Colorado Multi-Tiered System of Supports  Framework
Presented by Veronica Fiedler & Erin Ax, Ph.D.

Response to Intervention (RtI) is a problem-solving approach to improve individual student outcomes and is embedded within the Colorado Multi-Tiered System of Supports (COMTSS) framework. There is often confusion about the function of each, their purpose, and how to operationalize the work. Please join Veronica Fiedler (Office of Special Education) and Erin Ax (Office of Learning Supports) as they describe the interrelatedness between RtI and COMTSS, how this integration makes both stronger, and share tools to alleviate the confusion.


203-G:  Twice Exceptional Resource Updates and 2e Identification with Updated Guidance
Presented by Dr. Cynthia Rundquist, Colleen Anthony & Sarina Campoz, 2e Cadre ESSU

The Exceptional Children’s Education Act defines learners who are twice exceptional as students who are

  1.  Identified as a gifted student pursuant to Section 12.01(16) of these Rules; and 12.01(30)(b)(1) Identified as a child with a disability pursuant to Section 4.02 of ECEA Rules; or
  2. A qualified individual pursuant to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C.A. §794. [12.01(30)] 

Join Dr. Cynthia Rundquist and the 2e Cadre of Colleen Anthony and Sarina Campoz as they share with you updates to our 2e professional learning offered by the state and tools that the 2e team has developed for you to use with your districts and BOCES to help increase awareness and identification of twice exceptional learners. We will also explore how the updated identification guidance can be used to support the identification of 2e learners within your local AU. 


General Information


Registration is closed. Exceptions cannot be made. 

Registration is non-transferrable between participants 

Session Confirmation 

Confirmation emails will be sent to participants by close of business on September 12, 2022.

Virtual Platform

All sessions will be held using Zoom. For the best user experience use the latest version of Zoom. Download the latest version of Zoom

Past Meeting Information

Information and session handouts from the 2022 Spring Meeting can be found on the Directors of Special Education Spring Meeting webpage


Upcoming Meeting Information

Spring Meeting Save the Date! 

April 13th - 14th, 2023




Contact Information